United States District Court, C.D. Illinois
MERIT REVIEW ORDER
MICHAEL M. MIHM UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
proceeding pro se, pursues a § 1983 action alleging
deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs at the
Taylorville Correctional Center (“Taylorville”).
The case is before the Court for a merit review pursuant to
28 U.S.C. § 1915A. In reviewing the Complaint, the Court
accepts the factual allegations as true, liberally construing
them in Plaintiff's favor. Turley v. Rednour,
729 F.3d 645, 649-51 (7th Cir. 2013). However, conclusory
statements and labels are insufficient. Enough facts must be
provided to “state a claim for relief that is plausible
on its face.” Alexander v. United States, 721
F.3d 418, 422 (7th Cir. 2013)(citation and internal quotation
marks omitted). While the pleading standard does not require
“detailed factual allegations”, it requires
“more than an unadorned,
Wilson v. Ryker, 451 Fed.Appx. 588, 589 (7th Cir.
2011) quoting Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678
alleges a history of spontaneous rupture of his eardrums,
resulting in hearing loss. On June 6, 2016, at approximately
11:20 PM, Plaintiff felt a pop in his right ear and began
experiencing a yellow mucus discharge. Plaintiff told an
unidentified officer that he believed his eardrum had
ruptured. The officer called the healthcare unit and was told
that Plaintiff was to report to the unit at 5:45 a.m. the
claims that he was unable to sleep due to the pain. He was
seen the following morning by Jane Doe #1, identified as
Nurse Pat Smith. Nurse Smith conducted a physical exam, while
Jane Doe, #2, identified as Carol Mansfield, made entries in
Plaintiff's medical record. Plaintiff told the Defendants
this his pain was a “10” on a 10-point scale. He
claims that Defendant Mansfield incorrectly recorded his pain
level as a “6”. Plaintiff asserts that, even
though he met the protocols to be referred to a physician,
the Defendant nurses refused to do so. Instead, they
prescribed Tylenol and over-the-counter cold and allergy
claims that later that day, his left ear also began
discharging mucus and that his hearing in both ears
deteriorated. On June 8, 2016, he developed a milky film over
his eyes. Plaintiff went to the healthcare unit on June 9,
2016, complaining of the left ear and eye symptoms. The
Defendant Nurses allegedly refused to see Plaintiff, claiming
he had to wait three days between nursing sick call visits.
mother apparently called the prison, prompting Nurse Galvan
to call Plaintiff to the health care unit. Defendant Galvin
remained in the room as Nurse Randy conducted an examination.
Nurse Randy allegedly confirmed that Plaintiff's eardrum
had ruptured. He called a physician, and received orders for
Plaintiff to receive antibiotic eardrops. Plaintiff was seen
by a physician the following day and was given oral
antibiotics as well.
claims to have tinnitus (ringing in his ears), and loss of
hearing due to the Defendants' failure to timely treat
his ruptured eardrum. He also alleges the intentional
infliction of emotional distress.
well established that deliberate indifference to the serious
medical needs of prisoners violates the Eighth Amendment.
Snipes v DeTella, 95 F.3d 586, 590 (7th Cir 1996),
citing Estelle v. Gamble, 429 U.S. at 104, 97 S.Ct.
285 (1976). A claim does not rise to the level of an Eighth
Amendment issue, however, unless the punishment is
“deliberate or otherwise reckless in the criminal law
sense, which means that the defendant must have committed an
act so dangerous that his knowledge of the risk can be
inferred or that the defendant actually knew of an impending
harm easily preventable.” Antonelli v.
Sheahan, 81 F.3d 1422, 1427 (7th Cir.1996). Here,
Plaintiff states a colorable claim of deliberate indifference
against Defendants Smith and Mansfield.
also asserts a state law claim for the intentional infliction
of emotional distress. “Under Illinois law, a plaintiff
claiming intentional infliction of emotional distress must
demonstrate that the defendant intentionally or recklessly
engaged in ‘extreme and outrageous conduct' that
resulted in severe emotional distress.” Dent v.
Nally, No. 16-00442, 2016 WL 2865998, at *4 (S.D. Ill.
May 17, 2016) (internal citations omitted).
“[E]motional distress alone is not sufficient to give
rise to a cause of action. The emotional distress must be
severe.” Sornberger v. City of Knoxville,
Ill., 434 F.3d 1006, 1030 (7th Cir. 2006) (internal
citations omitted). “Fright, horror, grief, shame,
humiliation, worry, etc. may fall within the ambit of the
term ‘emotional distress, ' these mental conditions
alone are not actionable.” Id. at 1030. While
Plaintiff pleads significant physical symptoms, he does not
sufficiently allege symptoms of emotional distress and this
claim is dismissed.
IS THEREFORE ORDERED:
case shall proceed solely on the deliberate indifference
claims against Defendants Smith and Mansfield. Any claims not
identified will not be included in the case, except in the
Court's discretion upon motion by a party for good cause
shown, or by leave of court pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil
Procedure 15. The Clerk is DIRECTED to replace Jane Doe #1
with the name Pat Smith and Doe #2 with the name Carol
Plaintiff files , a motion for recruitment of pro
bono counsel, attaching a letter from one law office
declining the representation. The Court finds that this one
inquiry is not sufficient to establish that Plaintiff made a
reasonable attempt to secure counsel on his own. Pruitt
v. Mote, 503 F.3d 647, 654-55 (7th Cir. 2007).  is
DENIED at this time.
Clerk is directed to send to each Defendant pursuant to this
District's internal procedures: 1) a Notice of Lawsuit
and Request for Waiver of Service; 2) a Waiver of Service; 3)
a copy of the Complaint; and 4) a copy of this Order.
4. If a
Defendant fails to sign and return a Waiver of Service to the
Clerk within 30 days after the Waiver is sent, the Court will
take appropriate steps to effect formal service on that
Defendant and will require that Defendant pay the full costs
of formal service pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure
4(d)(2). If a Defendant no longer works at the address
provided by Plaintiff, the entity for which Defendant worked
at the time identified in the Complaint shall provide to the
Clerk Defendant's current work address, or, if not known,
Defendant's forwarding address. This information will be
used only for purposes of ...